Gary Mittelstaedt began serving as WaterAfrica’s President in October 2014. He joined the WaterAfrica Board in 2012 having a desire to make meaningful difference in the lives of those living in extreme poverty. He and his wife Judi traveled to Zambia with WaterAfrica in 2010 and saw first-hand the life transformations that began for village people when clean, sustainable water is provided by the World Vision Water, Sanitation, and Hygiene Program. They learned how foundational this healthy water is for all subsequent community development efforts including food security, health, children’s education, and economic empowerment. Their second trip to Zambia in 2015 was very exciting to see the tremendous progress being made. Gary retired from Intel Corporation January 1, 2014, following 17 years in global business development roles. Gary’s 45-year technology career included companies Mentor Graphics, Advanced Micro Devices, Honeywell Information Systems and General Electric.
Kevin Cummings is a founding board member of WaterAfrica and currently serves as Treasurer. In 2007 he traveled to Zambia on a church sponsored World Vision trip and his heart was broken as he witnessed the lack of safe drinking water sources. He observed women and girls walking long distances to retrieve water from contaminated shallow wells and from streams used for bathing and for watering livestock. Desiring to live out his calling in life to be the hands and feet of Christ, he is committed to providing safe water for people in Zambia.
Kinton Fowler and his wife have been sponsoring children in Africa through World Vision for 15 years. This raised his awareness of the water and sanitation needs in Africa. But in 2007, while on a World Vision trip to Zambia, he became acutely aware of these needs as he traveled through Zambia and saw women using the polluted streams to wash their clothing and dishes and then gather their drinking water from the same streams. He visited villages and saw the difference clean water and sanitation made in their lives. Soon after his return, he and his wife sponsored a well through WaterAfrica in a remote village in Zambia. He remains committed today to clean water for all in need.
Tedd Tritt retired from a business career in 2007. He continues to be active in creating opportunities for others to succeed through individual mentoring and not-for-profit board leadership positions relating to disadvantaged persons. The Tritt family has been very active in sponsoring children through ministries in third world countries for many years; Tedd gained deep, first-hand experience with impoverished and deprived citizens while in residence and visiting third-world countries on multiple continents. He has deep compassion and determination for contributing and supporting efforts to bring attainable resources to those in need. Helping to provide sustainable solutions is a personal passion.
Ann Zelenka joined the Board in September 2016. She comes with a long background of working and volunteering to serve youth, whether in the schools, church or community. She is currently involved in a national women’s organization encouraging women to further their education and provide scholarships as well as co-chairing the Child Sponsorship Team with Women of Vision. A native Portlander, she has been blessed to travel extensively in the US and globally. Travels have included trips with World Vision to Mozambique, Bolivia and Rwanda, gaining first-hand experiences and understanding the importance of programs like WASH (WAter, Sanitation, & Hygiene), Gender Equality and Economic Empowerment. Seeing these in action brings alive the transformational impact to a community of having ready access to clean water, sanitation and hygiene. Jesus calls us to serve in the margins and Ann is honored to serve on the WaterAfrica board; to be a part of walking along side those WaterAfrica serves in Zambia.
Margaret Hanscom grew up from early childhood understanding the impact of dirty water has on a community – a high mortality rate for children under the age of 5, the lack of education opportunities for girls. As an adult she felt called to join the WaterAfrica board to be part of bringing clean water and abundant life to people in rural Zambia. As a teacher in the Lake Oswego School District with a passion for helping children develop empathy and global perspectives, she spearheads WaterAfrica’s school outreach program where each year hundreds of local children begin to understand the realities of life for those without clean water. Margaret is member of Lake Grove Presbyterian Church where she sings with the 100-member Sanctuary choir. In her free time, she enjoys long distance running and spending time with her family and friends.